Standard Life (LSE: SL) reported a good start to the year, as the group’s assets under administration grew to £232.8bn on £6.5bn in net new funds and a rising market. The influx of new client money helped boost fee-based income 14%, while operating profit increased 6%.
The increased profits were due mainly to a 28% increase in the profits of the UK operations and a 37% increase in profits from Standard Life Investments.
To celebrate, the Board raised the interim dividend 6.5% to 5.22p which helps support a 4% yield at current prices.
International growth is an important part of the UK’s major life insurers and like peer Legal & General — which earlier this week reported strong fund inflows from foreign investors — Standard Life Investments demonstrated success in building out its global distribution channels: of the £7.1bn that flowed in during the first half of the year, 51% came from outside the UK.
The first-half success has management optimistic that growth will continue through the end of the year and beyond. With shares up over 50% in the past 12, investors will be happy but the question is can Standard Life’s international efforts — both through Standard Life Investments and operations in Canada and Asia — keep the growth going?
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> Neither Nate nor The Motley Fool own shares of Standard Life.